We always suspected it but now it's official; women do need more sleep than men but most are not getting enough.
Professor Jim Horne, director of the Sleep Research Centre at Loughborough University told the Mail Online that 'One of the major functions of sleep is to allow the brain to recover and repair itself. Women tend to multi-task - they do lots at once and are flexible - and so they use more of their actual brain than men do. Because of that, their sleep need is greater.
"However, a man who has a complex job that involves a lot of decision-making and lateral thinking may also need more sleep than the average male, though probably still not as much as a woman", explained Professor Horne.
Further research from the University of Surrey showed that once they've woken up, women find it much harder to get back to sleep than men and Professor Horne adds that the 'mother's minds are sensitive to the sound of their child crying from babyhood onwards, so that is often why they wake when a youngster stirs - yet a man sleeps through it.
The average adult needs between six and eight hours of sleep a night,' says Professor Horne. 'But individual needs differ greatly - some people can get by easily on six hours while others can't.
'What is important is that people have enough sleep to ensure they do not feel excessively sleepy in the day.'